Left Behind: The Game

Boy, where do I start?

Left Behind is a mega-best-selling series (“More Than 60 Million Books Sold”) of novels aimed at hard-core Christians. It’s about what happens on this planet during the Apocalypse: first, millions of people ascend bodily into heaven, then the survivors fight while everything goes, ahaha, to hell in a hand-basket. Or so I hear. It’s like Tom Clancy for the Christian fundamentalists.

It’s a pretty big media franchise, and now, surprise, it’s being turned into video games.

The corporate double-speak is amusing:

The mission of Left Behind Games is to become the world’s leading independent developer and publisher of quality interactive entertainment products that perpetuate family values and appeal to mainstream and Christian audiences, while remaining committed to increasing shareholder value and pursuing the highest standards of integrity and professionalism in all business affairs.

Translation: We will make games that appeal to the sensibilities of one group of people, while making tons of money for another group of people, and not doing anything unethical or illegal which would bring a third group of people come crashing down on us like a ton of bricks. Original!

The “New Genre” bit of The Vision is even better:

For the Year of 2003, the Gospel Music Association (GMA) reported sales of more than 47.1 million CDs.

Controversial as it has been, The Passion of the Christ has generated more than $500 million since it’s release. Experts are expecting it to become one of the top ten financially successful movies of all-time.

To date, not one high-quality video game has been marketed to this same audience. It is management’s belief that LEFT BEHIND will be a catalyst for a new genre of video game entertainment; known, as stated by the Wall Street Journal, as “God Games”.

Will Peter Molyneux sue for defamation?
This press release gives some more information about the actual game:

Scheduled for release between Christmas 2005 and Easter 2006, Left Behind: Eternal Forces will put players in command of the apocalyptic battles raging in the streets of New York City between the angelic Tribulation Forces and the demonic Global Community Peacekeepers during the End of Days. Gamers will participate in events from the Left Behind book series in single player mode and battle to capture territory from other players in the multi-player online game mode.

A post-apocalyptic RTS! How original. The Unique Selling Point seems to be:

LBG intends to develop games so as to include the same types of elements that have made interactive games popular for years and yet offer a less graphic experience to the sexual themes and gratuitous violence currently found in many games. We plan to make all games visually and kinetically appealing.

So it’s middle of the road schlock with a hard-core Christian theme – much like the novels, apparently.

Meh. My coffee buzz is wearing off. I’m getting tired of ranting about this.

(Via BoingBoing.)

Comments 8

  1. JunkerJames wrote:

    We toyed with the idea of doing a religious game, and concluded that it’d basically be as exploitative as porn. “Woow! Look at that big fat demographic! We can milk ’em dry, using their beliefs to esure sales.” Uhg. Didn’t sit well.

    Posted 01 Jul 2005 at 9:42
  2. Jurie Horneman wrote:

    I guess the best way to ensure you don’t feel as if you’re exploiting a demographic is to be a part of it.

    Posted 01 Jul 2005 at 9:55
  3. JunkerJames wrote:

    Erm. Are you trying to convert me? ;)

    Posted 06 Jul 2005 at 11:37
  4. Noah Falstein wrote:

    The people planning this need to watch the recent South Park where Kenny gets to die (of course) and use the “Golden PSP” to defend the kingdom of heaven against Satan. Great inspiration for them.

    I have a programmer friend who left the mainstream industry to do bible games. He proudly showed me that their first was entitled “Noah’s Ark”, and I tried not to cringe.

    Posted 06 Jul 2005 at 18:02
  5. Jurie Horneman wrote:

    I would *love* to get a game called after me. Or a boat. Or both!

    Posted 07 Jul 2005 at 0:01
  6. alisha adams wrote:

    how do u download these GAMESSSSSSSSSSSSSS plzzzzzzzzzzzzzz tell me, i reely want it………..

    Posted 02 Jun 2006 at 21:52
  7. SJR wrote:

    This statement is posted from an employee of Left Behind Games on behalf of Troy Lyndon, our Chief Executive Officer.

    There has been in incredible amount of MISINFORMATION published in the media and in online blogs here and elsewhere.

    Pacifist Christians and other groups are taking the game material out of context to support their own causes. There is NO “killing in the name of God” and NO “convert or die”. There are NO “negative portrayals of Muslims” and there are NO “points for killing”.

    Please play the game demo for yourself (to at least level 5 of 40) to get an accurate perspective, or listen to what CREDIBLE unbiased experts are saying after reviewing the game at http://www.leftbehindgames.com/pages/controversy.htm

    Then, we’d love to hear your feedback as an informed player.

    The reality is that we’re receiving reports everyday of how this game is positively affecting lives by all who play it.

    Thank you for taking the time to be a responsible blogger.

    Posted 19 Jan 2007 at 7:30
  8. NYC wrote:

    Hey, with so many people having an opinion about this game, how many have actually played it? And what credibility do they have? Focus on the Family has publications which can set the record straight for everyone…at http://www.pluggedinonline.com/thisweekonly/a0002989.cfm.

    Posted 08 Feb 2007 at 21:33